An Alternative Cinderella * Текст для чтения

Once upon a time there were three sisters who lived with their widowed father. The two eldest ran a beauty parlour and a clothes shop. They were both interested in finding a rich husband. The youngest daughter, whose name was Cinderella, looked after the house. Her father did not want her to start business as he wanted someone to look after him. Cinderella did not mind as she was doing a correspondence course in accountancy and marketing.

One day Cinderella decided to enter a competition in a woman’s magazine because it offered some good cash prizes. If she won one of them, it would help her finance the setting up of her own restaurant.

Around that time the newspapers were full of stories about a big party that was going to be held at the palace. It was said that the Prince wanted to find a wife and settle down. From the moment they heard about the ball, the two eldest sisters spent days and days trying to make themselves look beautifuL As for Cinderella, she wondered what all this fuss was about and didn’t have the slightest interest in the ball.

One morning, while she was doing some work for her accountancy course, there was a knock at the door. She opened it and saw an extraordinary woman standnig there with a ridiculous-looking tiara on her head. The woman who called herself Fairy Godmother, or FG for short, told Cinderella that she had won first prize in the magazine competition. She would have to dress up in fine clothes and go to the palace where she’d spend the night at the ball and be photographed for the woman’s magazine.

The big day arrived, and a shiny Rolls Royce came to pick her up. The man from the car hire firm said he was only on duty until midnight. Moments later a woman arrived bringing a fur coat and a diamond necklace which would be Cinderella’s just for the evening.

The palace turned out to be cold and draughty and the king was a man with a sad smile. He was almost bankrupt. Cinderella felt sorry for the man and suggested lots of ways of making money: re-organising the kitchens, opening the palace to the public and so on.

The prince took one look at Cinderella and asked her to dance. She kicked off her glass slippers, which were killing her, and joined him on the dance floor. By this time it had turned midnight. The car hire man drove away and the woman came to collect her fur coat and necklace. Soon afterwards, Cinderella left the palace and hitch-hiked home.

The following day the newspapers were full of the big story about the prince who had fallen for a beautiful and mysterious girl who had disappeared from the palace. Her glass slippers, which she had left behind, were the only clues that would lead him to her. When Cinderella read the news, she was absolutely furious. Nevertheless, she saw quite a lot of the prince because she started work at the palace as financial adviser. In no time at all the palace was making profit again. Naturally, Cinderella refused to marry the prince but she decided to help him cut down on his drinking and involved him in useful social work in the community.

Слова:

beauty parlour — салон красоты

correspondence course — заочный курс

accountancy — бухучет

cash — зд. наличные деньги

to set up — зд. основывать, учреждать

to settle down — зд. остепениться

fuss — суета

to make a fuss — поднимать шум, суетиться

extraordinary — необычный, замечательный, выдающийся, исключительный

ridiculous — смехотворный, смешной, нелепый

Fairy Godmother — добрая фея (крестная Золушки)

car hire firm — фирма по прокату автомобилей

necklace — ожерелье

draught — сквозняк

draughty — продуваемый насквозь

slippers — комнатные туфли,тапочки

to hitch-hike — путешествовать автостопом

mysterious — таинственный

to be furious — быть в ярости

to be furious with smb. — злиться на кого-либо

nevertheless — тем не менее, хотя

adviser — советник

profit — прибыль

to make profit — получать прибыль

to involve — вовлекать

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